Abraham Maslow created an explanation for how human needs work and how we try to fulfill our needs at five basic levels. Essentially the first level is our physiological needs (Basics: breathing, eating, etc.). Then are we safe, are we loved/belong, how we feel about where we are, and the top of the hierarchy is self-actualization (are you okay with who you are). When you think of our hierarchy of needs and we apply it to this story in Mark 2 about the paralyzed man, we see how Jesus has a completely different idea of what is really needed. Jesus knows what we need, better than we do.

The man and his friends came to Jesus because he needed healing. His basic needs were not being met, so they came to Jesus to find healing and find a better life situation. The man’s friends knew Jesus was the best chance to have his life’s basic needs met. When they cut the hole in the roof and lowered their friend Jesus saw the real need. Jesus simply said, “Son, your sins are forgiven.” This was so much more than just fixing the man’s body so he could get his basic needs met. Jesus addressed the real need, the real problem, and created a hierarchy of needs that our world doesn’t want to believe. Jesus revealed through his words, sin has to be forgiven before other needs can really be met. Fixing sin is the first need to be met so God can heal everything else. The brokenness that sin brought to humanity, needs healing and that only comes through the forgiveness Jesus can offer.

For most of my life, I’ve tried to make sure my needs and the needs of the people around me are met.  I enjoy cooking and making sure people are comfortable, but Jesus looks at our hearts and wants to make us holy and righteous. He wants to bring us into his family so we can find what we need in God first, not just comfort. Will we let him actually take care of us, will we allow him to really forgive our sins, or will we try to do this on our own? Here are two things I am going to ask you to do: 1) Spend some time with Jesus and ask him to show you where you need him today.  2) Like the friends in the story, who do you need to share the hope of Jesus with?

Pastor Jeremy Johnson
Family Pastor

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